March 31, 2010

God's Gift

READY8 “For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God” ~ Ephesians 2:8

AIM8 Good news - spring is here! Woo Hoo! The sun is shining, the snow has melted and everyone seems to be in a much better mood. Finally, we are able to get out of the house and enjoy the fresh air again.

It’s funny, when people are asked, “What is your favorite season?” It’s rare to see spring as one of the answers. However, I have to admit, spring really IS a wonderful season. After winter, all the plants and trees are dormant, the grass is brown and everything looks dead and drab. Thankfully, God works behind the scenes and gives new life to all living things. As we look around we witness flowers starting to bloom, trees growing buds, and the grass becoming greener.

Take a deep breath. Ahhh, the smell of a fresh spring day; it’s invigorating isn’t it? There’s something about spring that flips the switch inside of us and sparks a renewed energy and increased motivation as we go about our daily life. It’s almost as if God recharged our batteries and handed us a new life too. Guess what? God really DOES offer us a new life. Every Easter, we are blessed with the reminder of the opportunity God provides us to have not only a new life, but also an eternal life with Him in heaven. How amazing is that? He sent his only son, Jesus, to die on the cross, to save all of us from our faults and mistakes in life, only to give us life everlasting. Wow, that hardly seems fair! Fair or not, it’s exactly what God wanted. He wanted to give us a gift that would last forever…but only if you want to receive His gift. As spring comes, it will fade into the other seasons and the life cycle will continue. However, God is the same today, tomorrow and forever. He never fades. He never changes and always waits to give us His love, His friendship and His eternal gifts. If you have never taken the step to receive this amazing gift from God, do yourself a favor and talk to one of your friends about this special gift. Perhaps you have a friend who doesn’t know about the gift of Jesus. No problem! Simply connect with a mentor, a Christian friend or a family member who regularly attends church. I just know any one of those folks would LOVE to share the gift of Jesus with you. Truly, it’s a gift you never want to pass up and all you have to do is accept it and say, “Thank you.” So, treat yourself to a new gift this spring or renew yourself again with the gift that keeps on giving all year long, far after the snow has melted… God’s love.

FIRE!8 Some of you feel that quiet voice nudging you to accept God’s lavish gift. Some of you have been enjoying God’s wonderful gift for years. Some of you may believe in other gods or other religious ideals, but are intrigued by this amazing gift. God knows your heart and is not so concerned with your words as He is with the attitude of your heart. Praying is simply talking to God and believing what you are saying.

If you want to accept God’s priceless gift, you can pray, in your own heart and mind, the following prayer:

“Jesus, I believe you are the Son of God. Thank you for dying on the cross for my sins. Please forgive my sins and give me the gift of eternal life. I ask you to come into my life and heart to be my Lord and Savior. Amen.”

Yay, you! Now, share your good news with a friend (or me) so he can continue to encourage you and support your decision.

Happy Easter, Dear Friends. What a glorious time of year!

Be Excellent!

March 23, 2010

Is Life Getting In The Way?

READY8 “True friendship isn’t about being there when it’s convenient; it’s about being there when it’s not.” ~ Anonymous

AIM8 How many times have you met up with a good friend, after a long absence, and then realized how much you truly missed her? In a few short moments, you discover just how much you enjoyed laughing together, crying together and sharing life’s special moments together. So, why do we let our busy lives get in the way of our important relationships with our friends?

Our friends are the ones who encourage us, lift us up when we fall, love us when we fail, cheer for us when we try and celebrate with us when we succeed. They cry with us when we are hurting and rejoice with us when we are happy. However, our lives get so crowded with over-scheduling and busyness that we easily forget to make time for our friends. Yes, we know our true friends will be there to pick up where we left off. But it’s a super-charge for your soul to set aside some time to connect with your support team, your friends, on more frequent occasions.

My friends, don’t take your special friendships for granted. Be sure to tell your friends how much they mean to you. Even if it means slowing down your life and making time in your busy schedule, it is important to make those forgotten friends a priority again.

FIRE!8 We all have friends we haven’t seen or talked to in awhile. Take time to call or write a short note to one of your friends. Touch base with her in the midst of your crazy life. You’ll be glad you did!

Be Excellent!

March 16, 2010


READY8“People often say that motivation doesn't last. Well, neither does bathing - that's why we recommend it daily.” ~ Zig Ziglar

AIM8 Inspirational words can motivate you to become a successful person. They can help you cope in the midst of a tough time in life. Here is a video that was sent to me by a dear friend a few months ago. It inspired me when I watched it the first time as much as it inspires me today. Enjoy this complimentary dose of life-charging motivation! (Feel free to watch it as often as necessary to reap the benefits of the message…plus, I know you’ll want to go back and try to identify all the movies!)

40 Inspirational Speeches in 2 Minutes - Overthinking It

Now that you’ve watch the video, don’t you just want to raise your arms up and shout at the world? Go ahead – do it!

FIRE!8 Do something today that allows you to declare a personal victory. Even if it’s simply patting yourself on the back for getting up on time – it’s still a victory. Yay, You!

Be Excellent!

March 10, 2010

Always Let Your Conscience Be Your Guide

READY8 “A conscience is that still small voice that people won't listen to. That's just the trouble with the world today...” ~ Jiminy Cricket in Walt Disney’s movie Pinocchio

AIM8 There I was, checking out at the grocery store with all my food items for the week. I thanked the cashier and proceeded to push my cart out to the parking lot, so I could unload my purchases. After placing all the bags into my car, I picked up my purse from the front basket to return the cart. GASP! There, under my purse, were the birthday cards I had selected while I was shopping in the grocery store. I had forgotten about them and waltzed right out of the store without paying for them. Now, here’s where my conscience started to wrestle with me. On one shoulder, I had the angel telling me to go all the way back into the store and pay for the cards. After all, it would be stealing if I didn’t pay for them. On the other shoulder, I had the devil telling me to forget about it. You’re ready to get in the car and the storeowners don’t know anything about the cards in my cart. Ugh! Why are there even options to consider in a situation like this?

I didn’t think about it for another moment. I returned my cart and marched right back into the grocery store, cards in hand. I got back in line with the same cashier and explained that I forgot to put the cards on the belt when I was checking out and needed to come back into the store to pay for my birthday cards. I think he was a little surprised because he kind of stammered, “Oh…. yes.” So I paid and walked back out to my car smiling. I knew I had made the right decision. The decision a person of integrity would make. Besides, it was a great story to share with my children and all of you.

FIRE!8 Be a person of integrity today. Tell the truth in all situations, pay for all your purchases, let someone merge in front of you on the highway and smile. You deserve to hold your head high when you know you are making the right choices in life.

Be Excellent!

March 2, 2010

Are You Teachable?

READY8 “The purpose of learning is growth, and our minds, unlike our bodies, can continue growing as long as we live.” ~ Mortimer Adler

AIM8 You’ve been enjoying the life topics of Arrows of Integrity for almost eight months now. Hooray! However, as I learn from my experiences in life, I have been wondering if you are learning anything from the weekly messages I’ve been sending you. All the good advice in the world won't help if you don't have a teachable spirit. To know whether you are really open to new ideas and new ways of doing things, answer the following questions:

Am I open to other people's ideas?
Do I listen more than I talk?
Am I open to changing my opinion bases on new information?
Do I readily admit when I am wrong?
Do I observe before acting on a situation?
Do I ask questions?
Am I willing to ask a question that will expose my ignorance?
Am I willing to ask for directions?
Do I act defensive when criticized, or do I listen openly for the truth?

If you answered no to one or more of these questions, then you have room to grow in the area of teach-ability. Remember the words of John Wooden: "Everything we know we learned from someone else!"

FIRE!8 I’m sure you simply read through the above questions to get to the bottom of my message. Take 5 minutes, reread the questions above and answer them honestly. Recognize areas where you can improve and pat yourself on the back for the areas where you excel!!

Be Excellent!